GOOBJOOG NEWS|MOGADISHU: The country is back again to the drawing table after two opposing sides in today’s preliminary meeting failed to reach an agreement on the form and content of the main electoral talks.
The Federal Government issued simultaneous statements via the government-controlled news agency SONNA and a press conference by Information Minister Osman Dubbe taking the blame to Kismayo and Garowe.
“The government is making it clear to the Somali people today that the two regional presidents of Puntland and Jubaland do not want elections to take place in this country based on the September 17th agreement and the February 16th memorandum of understanding,” a statement published on SONNA immediately after the failed talks read in part.
It added, “It is unfortunate that these two Presidents of Puntland and Jubaland have become a roadblock that does not allow elections.”
Both Ahmed Madobe (Jubbaland) and his Puntland counterpart Ahmed Madobe have not released statements.
Dubbe said in a video statement that the two Federal Member States which have become a thorn in Farmaajo’s flesh were to blame for the failed talks.
“Finally, as part of the government’s effort to transition Somalia towards peaceful, inclusive, timely and transparent elections, President Farmaajo agreed to engage in the Leadership consultative summit; unfortunately, Jubaland and Puntland Leadership dishonored the Forum.”
It was not immediately clear what the government meant by ‘dishonour of the talks by both Madobe and Deni.
The meeting was the second one in less than a week after a two days session last week ended with no word from either side except tweets by some regional presidents highlighting the content of the talks.
Today’s meeting which is a continuation of the ‘ice breaking’ session was expected to flesh out the contentious issues in the agenda ahead of the main talks.
The collapse of the talks today takes back the country to the beginning of the race which involves another set of preliminary meetings for the sides to meet again in effect casting further doubt on when Somalia will go to elections.